Geekly Update - 10 April 2013

Category: Tech-News

Can your employer legally demand the password to your email and Facebook accounts? Is it possible to play Pong while clinging to the 19th-floor window of a skyscraper? And is there a silver lining in Facebook's latest move to completely take over your smartphone? Get answers to these burning questions, and the scoop on the latest tech news, in this edition of the Geekly Update. It's guaranteed to make you 146% smarter, read on...

The AskBobRankin Geekly Update

Employers would be allowed to demand access to employees’ personal email and social media accounts by merely alleging employee “misconduct,” if a Washington State bill is passed. Thirty-three other States are considering similar legislation.

"King Pong?" The city of Philadelphia is the place to be, if you love the classic video game, Pong. The "screen" will be the face of a 29-story skyscraper, and players will control the action from the ground with super-sized joysticks on the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

"The biggest loser..." Bessemer Venture Partners’ Anti-Portfolio is a list of startups in which the company refused to invest. Among the kicks-in-the-butt that BVP gives itself are Google, eBay, Intel, Intuit, and Paypal. I'm going to submit my request for funding today!

Geekly Update 04-10-2013

Good news: Windows 8 no longer has the lowest market share among desktop users; it rose from 2.67% in February to 3.17% in March, according to researchers at Net Applications. Bad news: it beat out only “Other” which had 2.05%.

“Game of Thrones,” the fascinatingly grim HBO series, set a Bittorrent record with its third season’s premiere on March 31. Within hours of its broadcast, over 163,000 peer-to-peer servers distributed more than 1 million illegal copies. Ironically, the episode’s title is, “Valar Dohaeris.” (“All men must serve.”)

"Heads on a platter..." A 4TB hard drive for under $200? That’s the Seagate Desktop HDD, now shipping at $190 for a barebones drive or $205 for the kit. It features only 4 platters, reducing manufacturing costs, power consumption, and head activity.

"Friendly fire?" On April 4, 2013, Facebook unveiled a suite of its mobile apps dubbed Facebook Home. It turns your Android phone’s home screen into Mark Zuckerberg’s billboard which he can rent.

“Stop me if you’ve heard this one...” While going through his deceased father’s computer, Daniel Drucker found a file named JOKES.TXT. It contained only punchlines. He posted the punchlines to the Web hive-mind Metafilter and within hours 30 of the 31 setups had been supplied.

“Take down my takedown notice and this one too!” Movie studios demand that Google stop publishing their DMCA takedown notices because each notice lists the URLs of pirated content that studios want to bury. Google is refusing such meta-takedown notices.

Live chat with remote bank tellers is coming to Bank of America ATMs. Exact-change check cashing, split deposits, and other complex services are possible. But don't we already have this technology... inside the bank where the actual teller awaits?

Malware that turns your PC into a Bitcoin mining zombie is on the rise, say researchers at Kaspersky Labs. So far, it’s transmitted via a spam message on Skype, but could appear anywhere.

Your thoughts on these topics are welcome! Post your comment or question below...

 
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Most recent comments on "Geekly Update - 10 April 2013"

Posted by:

GERSHOM.... MENDLOVITZ....
10 Apr 2013

DEAR ALL....
AND WHAT ABOUT THE BILL OF RIGHTS....
BEST.... GERSHOM....


Posted by:

Lee McIntyre
10 Apr 2013

What a delightful article -- "While going through his deceased father’s computer, Daniel Drucker found a file named JOKES.TXT." If you like humor, be sure to follow the link Bob includes, and then, following other links that appear, you'll have enough jokes (I estimate 70% are clean) to last a lifetime.

And the thoughtfulness of the folks who came through for Daniel was heartwarming.

Thanks, Bob.


Posted by:

KRS
10 Apr 2013

The Seagate site doesn't mention the rotation speed, but I think it's only 5400 rpm, since it's not mentioned in their 7200 rpm comparison chart. For something that big, to use as the sole hard disk, I want 10,000 rpm.

Also, the new drive appears to be SATA2 rather than SATA3.

Seagate's combo drives with built-in SSD have been down-rated because their 5400 rpm platters can't keep up.


Posted by:

Eric
11 Apr 2013

"Thirty-three other states are considering similar legislation"... as if this is 'breaking news', but this country's so-called leaders are truly pathetic. What a generally worthless lot of human beings. Every time I think that they've hit rock bottom, they manage to lower the bar even further.


Posted by:

Mike
13 Apr 2013

The Only reason Win8 is gaining market share is because it is hard to buy a laptop without it pre-installed. I've spent a few weeks working with it and hate it. It's only fit for tablets or other toys.


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